With her excellent power-punk group Cayetana sadly on indefinite hiatus as of last year, Augusta Koch has once again revived her side-project Gladie, this time for a full-length album. That album is called Safe Sins, and it features tracks that showcase Gladie at their most polished and fleshed-out, with the band sounding better than they ever have on the recording.
These tracks co-exist with numbers that dial back the polish significantly for a more lo-fi sound that still emphasizes the band’s impeccable sense of melody. With these two seemingly disparate sounds of Gladie existing in perfect harmony, Safe Sins is one of early-2020’s best indie records.
In anticipation of the record, Koch sat down to talk Philadelphia, Neil Young, and Bitcoin in the latest Indie Mixtape 20.
What are four words you would use to describe your music?
Mostly. Not. Too. Bad
It’s 2050 and the world hasn’t ended and people are still listening to your music. How would you like it to be remembered?
I’d be so grateful if people were still listening to our music by then. If it resonated with them in any way that would be enough to make me happy.
What’s your favorite city in the world to perform?
Philadelphia because I love my friends and also sleeping in my bed.
Who’s the person who has most inspired your work, and why?
John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats, absolutely. His music and writing have carried me through the best and worst moments of my adult life. Every time I listen to them I’m inspired to be a better songwriter.
Where did you eat the best meal of your life?
Los Gallos Mexican Taqueria in South Philadelphia.
What album do you know every word to?
Any early Saddle Creek record is burned into my brain for all eternity.
What was the best concert you’ve ever attended?
The best concert I’ve seen in the past year would have to be Sharon Van Etten. I’ve been a huge fan of hers for a long time now and it was my first time seeing her live. Her performance was so powerful and dynamic. She also came across incredibly sincere, which is how I’ve always imagined her to be.
What is the best outfit for performing and why?
My big bud jumpsuit is perfect for performing because it’s just one piece and it’s comfortable as hell.
Who’s your favorite person to follow on Twitter and/or Instagram?
I love Neko Case’s Twitter, it’s never boring and doesn’t fill me with dread.
What’s your most frequently played song in the van on tour?
I once played Neil Young’s “Unknown Legend” every day for a whole month. Didn’t get old to me.
What’s the last thing you Googled?
“Where can I stream Vanderpump Rules season 8?”
What album makes for the perfect gift?
Safe Sins by Gladie just made Oprah’s favorite things list.
Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever crashed while on tour?
Last year we did a tour where we slept in the van every night. One night we parked in a state park outside of San Francisco and woke up to see coyotes running around the van. That made for a pretty wild morning.
What’s the story behind your first or favorite tattoo?
My first tattoo was Rx Bandits lyrics that I got the day I turned 18.
What artists keep you from flipping the channel on the radio?
Turning off Terry Gross, host of NPR’s Fresh Air, is blasphemous in my car.
What’s the nicest thing anyone has ever done for you?
I wait tables and once I had a fan write a really touching letter on the receipt. It made me cry and I still have it in my wallet.
What’s one piece of advice you’d go back in time to give to your 18-year-old self?
Buy some Bitcoin.
What’s the last show you went to?
David Bazan and Frances Quinlan.
What movie can you not resist watching when it’s on TV?
I have a real soft spot for the hit movie Grandma’s Boy.
What would you cook if Kanye were coming to your house for dinner?
Ohhh I think I’d order in.
Safe Sins is out February 28 via Lame-O Records. Pre-order it here.